Consumer expectations for brands in the APAC region are changing rapidly, according to a new report from Google.

The report – A peek into your consumer’s future 2020 – highlighted three trends in APAC, as customers’ expectations for community, commerce, and inclusivity, evolve.

Consumers want to do more than watch

The report found that “with me” videos that feature normal people doing normal tasks like cooking and cleaning, have risen in popularity globally.

In the first half of 2019 alone, YouTube viewers in South Korea watched more than 500 years’ worth of “with me” videos across various categories like “draw with me” and “eat with me”. While, watch time for “with me” content grew in Indonesia and Pakistan by 180% and 150% year over year, respectively.

For instance, the Food Network branched out from network TV with an app that lets users take live cooking classes with top chefs, and YoRipe launched a live online video series that invited people to virtually cook with MasterChef finalist Sowmiya Venkatesan.

Google suggested that to stay ahead of the curve, brands need to create online experiences that invite consumers to take action, speak directly to viewers, and invoke community.

Consumers want genuine inclusivity 

The survey found that 50% of all online APAC consumers agree that the practice of inclusivity is important to them, prioritizing diversity is not only the right thing to do — it’s also key to connecting with a wider audience.

Google pointed to the rising trend of more companies investing in projects that address the needs of underrepresented and underserved communities. For example, Comma Leung Man-wai’s wallet, which helps the visually impaired identify banknote denominations, and the new detailed voice guidance the Google Maps team launched in Tokyo shows how inclusive design empowers people to confidently complete everyday tasks.

APAC consumers are also seeking out brands that align with their cultures, identities, and personal preferences, pushing brands to become more diverse than ever. For instance, Indonesia’s Wardah Cosmetics is paving the way for halal cosmetics — a forward-thinking move, considering Muslim beauty lovers are expected to spend $90 billion on cosmetics by 2023

Consumers are redefining ownership

Second-hand and rental goods used to have few takers in APAC but today, making financially sensible investments and participating in a circular economy is more important to people than being the original owner. Google found that more than half of all online millennials and Gen Zers in APAC now believe that pre-owned products have better value than new items.

The prevalence of digital marketplaces makes it easier to re-buy and resell almost everything and more brands like Alibaba are entering the peer-to-peer rental space to keep up with people’s love of rational consumption.

Before launching a new service or product, Google noted that brands can consider how to empower consumers to participate in a circular economy in a way that’s good for both their wallets and the environment.

Sourced from AsiaOne, China Daily, Think with Google